Roy Hodgson puts faith in Daniel Sturridge and Marcus Rashford

Manchester United teenager one of five strikers named in England squad for Euro 2016

England’s Marcus Rashford after scoring on his international debut against Australia. Photograph: Tim Goode/PA Wire.

England’s Marcus Rashford after scoring on his international debut against Australia. Photograph: Tim Goode/PA Wire.

 

Roy Hodgson has handed both Daniel Sturridge and the 18-year-old Marcus Rashford an opportunity to make a mark at the summer’s European Championship after including the strikers among a quintet of forwards in his final 23-man squad for Euro 2016.

The England manager, who had already seen Fabian Delph ruled out with a groin injury, chose to omit Leicester City’s Danny Drinkwater and the Newcastle United winger Andros Townsend.

Calf complaint

Sturridge’s inclusion comes after he proved he had recovered fully from his latest calf complaint, which had ruled him out of Friday’s friendly victory over Australia at the Stadium of Light. The Liverpool forward, who has played only 58 minutes for his country since September 2014, worked on his fitness over the weekend and has now completed two sessions with the squad in preparation for tomorrow’s final pre-tournament friendly, against Portugal.

The inclusion of Rashford is arguably more eye-catching given he was playing under-18s academy football at Manchester United only a few months ago. In the period since, he has scored on his first-team, Premier League and senior England debuts, as well as in his first Manchester derby, with his form persuading Hodgson that he would be an asset in France despite the fact that Harry Kane, Wayne Rooney and Jamie Vardy will start as the team’s first-choice forwards.

While Drinkwater’s omission, despite a fine season with title winners Leicester City, was expected, the decision to cut Townsend from the party was taken despite assistant coach Gary Neville championing the Newcastle player’s cause. Neville had contemplated trying to sign the 24-year-old, then with Tottenham Hotspur, during his stint in charge of Valencia and had pointed to the variety he would offer the squad as a natural wide player. His form for Newcastle since January had been impressive.

Meanwhile, Chris Coleman has named Joe Ledley in his 23-man Wales squad, only 24 days after the Crystal Palace midfielder broke his leg. Ledley has been facing a race against time to prove his fitness, but Coleman and his staff have been encouraged by the midfielder’s progress. Guardian Service

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